James Parker received a call he has dreamed of for a long time on Monday afternoon.
The Seattle Mariners selected the Clemson shortstop with the 234th overall pick during the eighth round of the 2021 MLB Draft.
His father Tim Parker received a similar call 31 years ago after a stellar career with the Tigers. Tim was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in third round the 1990 MLB Draft and paved the way for his son to take a shot at achieving his big league dreams.
“It does to think that he went through this whole thing so that I can do it as well is pretty special and I’m really excited,” Parker told The Clemson Insider.
He’s been dreaming of this moment since he was a little kid and after an impressive career at Clemson, Parker is ready to take the next step.
“It’s a dream come true obviously we all grow up having the desire that you want to play at the next level,” Parker said. “This is just a dream come true I’ve put in a lot of work from when I was younger until now and I’m really speechless but super excited to compete and work hard.”
Parker proved a reliable bat for Clemson this past season and furthered the legacy of great shortstop play in the program with a steady hand in the middle infield.
He led the Tigers in batting average this season hitting .324 with 38 RBIs and eight home runs he also recorded a .928 fielding percentage as he started all 52 games at shortstop during the 2021 season.
Parker didn’t have a long conversation with the Mariners but is excited to discover his role in the organization.
“It all happened quick so I talked to them maybe 10 minutes before it happened and it’s exciting,” Parker said. “I haven’t talked to them a whole lot but I’m just excited more so just to be a part of it.”